Saturday, June 5, 2010

Dean dancing "hula"

OK, this is too funny not to share. Dean has been dancing "hula" a lot lately. But the final "pose" and bow are new additions. To me, this looks more Tahitian than Hawaiian hula, but Dean calls it hula. Here's a video. Remember, if you get the e-mail updates, go to the blog HERE to watch the video.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Memorial Day hiking 13 Crossings

It's been a REALLY long time since we hiked the 13 Crossings hike around the north side of West Maui, out past Waihe'e. It's one of our favorite hikes and it's kind of a local secret - so we usually have the place to ourselves.

We really do love this hike. This was Dean's 3rd time to hike it. His first time was when he was about 4 months old and my Dad went with us. It's hard for me to imagine that just 3 short years ago my Dad could do this hike. Amazing. Here are a few photos from that trip:

And then our last time hiking this trail was actually Dean's first solo hike out of the backpack kid carrier. I blogged about that HERE with lots of cute pictures!

This trip Dean was definitely more of a Big Boy. It's pretty funny because he kept calling it the "Ninja Warrior" hike. Dean LOVES Ninja Warrior. Do you guys know what Ninja Warrior is? It's this crazy Japanese obstacle course thing - it's on TV here and Dean will watch it FASCINATED, and then he wants to play Ninja Warrior. He'll move chairs and pillows around the living room and set up a Ninja Warrior course, jumping from chair to chair, rolling across the pillows, etc. Or his favorite is to play Ninja Warrior on his swingset - climbing UP the slide, then onto the crossbar, climbing from there down onto the swing, to the other swing, up onto the other crossbar, jumping off, doing a somersault, then running to the finish. He uses a red square lego as the "button" at the end of his course and he'll run as fast as he can to the lego and "push" the button and throw his arms in the air and yell "I did it!", sometimes he'll fall on the ground and pant like he's super tired. It's so funny. The funniest part is that he wants us to "say the Japanese words" while he's playing Ninja Warrior. So we yell out random words in Japanese - we don't know very many Japanese words - sometimes I end up saying things in a Japanese accent like "Wax on, Wax off" and "Oh, Daniel son" or "Tetsuya Hasegawa" (that's my good friend T's name - he would be cracking up and making fun of me if he was reading this. I should e-mail T to teach me some more appropriate Japanese words and phrases to yell) but Dean doesn't know the difference. And I promise I'm not being racist. I just don't know any Japanese. Anyway, here's a youtube video of Ninja Warrior in case you don't know what I'm talking about (remember to go to the blog HERE to watch videos):

Ok, so anyway. Dean called the 13 Crossings hike the "Ninja Warrior" hike - you have to cross the stream several times (supposedly 13 times) and you have to really sort of boulder hop across most of the time. I guess that reminded him of Ninja Warrior. It was pretty cute!

He started out refusing to put his Keens on - I'm pretty sure he's outgrown them judging by the fact that I had to forcefully SHOVE his feet into them - and wanted to wear his slippers, but they were REALLY impractical for this hike. He slipped and fell, scraping his knee on a rock on the first crossing and then we talked him into putting on his Keens. He also decided this was a good time to put on his swim trunks (he does NOT like to get his underwear wet) and pee in the stream.

He really had so much fun on this hike as you can see from the photos - checking out the fuzzy moss on a big rock, climbing on top of giant boulders in the middle of a stream, checking out stinky holes inside of tree trunks, and of course he insisted I take a picture of his "owie".

After we got home and showered all the dirt and sweat off, we had a little cupcake picnic in the backyard. The night before I had picked up some yummy looking cupcakes at Whole Foods in honor of Memorial Day.

Dean LOVED his cupcake and ate the entire thing. I couldn't even eat my whole cupcake! So far on Memorial Day Dean had consumed a juice box, a couple of mini cookies, some Pirate's Booty from Jamba Juice, a large bite of my raspberry Pound Cake from Starbucks, some Apple Sauce, a GIGANTIC cupcake, then for lunch almost immediately after the cupcake he had leftover spaghetti and about 10 large black olives (Dean loves olives), then a big cup of milk. That was a TON of food for little Dean, most of which was total JUNK. He went down for his nap and after only about an hour he came out and walked in and said "Mommy, you need to go in there and clean that stuff up". I was on the computer and was like "what stuff? You need to go finish your nap.". He said "No, you need to go clean that up right now Mommy". I looked at him and there was something all down the front of his tummy. I didn't know at first what it was and was all "Oh Dean, what is that? What did you do?", then I smelled him and instantly knew he had puked. I asked him if he threw up and he said "yes" and very dramatically nodded his head. I took him straight to the bathtub and yelled for Joel, who went in his room to clean up the mess. As I was cleaning up Dean I could hear Joel in his room very loudly making lots of gagging noises and lots of "Oh man, that's bad". Then here came Joel into the bathroom, opened up the medicine cabinet and pulled out some Vick's Vaporub and rubbed a big glob under his nose and just walked right back out without saying anything. I was laughing so hard. Dean was totally fine at this point and throwing a fit because he wanted "That orange medicine juice in the fridge" (aka Pedialyte) that he had begged for about 3 wks ago when I cleaned out the fridge, but I told him it was medicine and only for when he was sick. He asked what kind of sick and I told him throw up or diarrhea sick. How the hell did he remember that? And that's all he cared about. There was a small part of me for a minute that squinted my eyes and thought "wait a minute. you didn't just make yourself puke so you could have that Pedialyte, did you?". But no, it was definitely just all the crap he had eaten that morning. Luckily he wasn't sick. He didn't seem to feel great the rest of the afternoon, but he's been fine since then. But the rest of our Memorial Day was pretty much shot and spent washing sheets and his mattress pad and quilt, we even had to wash 3 of his Georges (his stuffed giraffe that he loves), a teddy bear and his pillow and Joel had A LOT of carpet scrubbing to do. Yuck.

Keawakapu Beach

We spent Sunday morning, May 16, enjoying the sun and surf at our favorite beach, Keawakapu, in Kihei. We got there bright and early and stayed for a few hours. The weather was beautiful despite the fact that it was a little hazy with our recent Kona winds. Dean had a blast as usual playing in the sand and insisted that Joel dig a giant hole for him to hide in and jump in and out of. Joel made the mistake of taking Dean with him on a long walk down the beach to Zach's to get some coffee - Dean always wants to play in the tidepools when you take him down to that end of the beach and then it's like pulling teeth to get him to walk back. My Mom, who takes him to this beach almost every Tuesday and Thursday, has figured out that if she draws arrows in the sand and tells Dean he has to follow the arrows back to their stuff, this usually works pretty well to get him moving. Joel didn't know that trick and they were gone FOREVER!! When they got back, it was so funny because Joel said the reason it took so long is that for some reason Dean insisted on stopping every 25 feet to draw an arrow in the sand and told Joel he had to follow the arrows!! So cute! Anyway, here are some pictures from our day...

Random Stuff from May

So here we are, I can't believe it's already JUNE! Crazy. I have a lot of photos I never got around to posting in May that I wanted to share, so I'm going to do one big post and get them all uploaded. A lot of total randomness in this post, so be prepared!!

I've been doing A LOT of reading lately. I've always been a big reader. I love to read. (and I love that Dean seems to love to read so far. I hope he continues to love to read). There's just something about a good book. I can remember as a child actually getting in trouble for reading! Come on Mom - what kind of parent actually scolds their child for reading too much!?!? Ok, maybe I can admit it was a little excessive. I would be on the couch or chair in the living room reading for HOURS and she'd be calling me in for dinner and I wouldn't want to put my book down. I can remember her yelling at me "Put that book down and GET IN HERE and eat!" (feel free to insert "clean your room" or "go to bed" or something else of that nature in place of "eat"). When the new e-readers came out Joel thought I would instantly have to have one, but I was extremely leery of them - I just didn't think holding an electronic device would be the same as a book. I felt like I needed the feel and weight and smell of a real live book in my hands. I felt like there was this psychological connection, this feeling of comfort, that I get in holding a book that would be lost in an electronic reader. So no, I didn't want one. I'll stick to my REAL books thank you very much. But then I had a patient who brought in his Kindle every week and I'd watch him read on it while he rode the bike. Then my friend Ellyn got one and RAVED about hers (and we're much alike when it comes to books, among other things). Then my Mother-in-Law, Jo got one and brought it with her on her last trip to Maui and I played with it a little. But I was still iffy about them. But then Joel got me this for Mother's Day:

And my life is forever changed. I freaking LOVE it. Seriously. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I can't even explain it. It's amazing. I was soooo dead set against a Kindle and even when I opened it up and the first day or 2 I still wasn't sure. But now I don't know how I ever lived without it. I don't even WANT to read a "real" book ever again! And I can't believe I'm even saying that. ME. Lifelong book lover. SERIOUS bookstore addict. I mean, one of my favorite places in the WORLD is a big Barnes and Noble (in fact, it's on my list of 5 places Joel is instructed to leave a portion of my ashes when I die -just stealthily sprinkle some of me in between Romance and Historical Fiction - my idea of heaven is a gigantic book store all to myself!!). Anyway, if you're a reader and you've been on the fence about a MUST get one.

OK, that took a lot more space in this post than I intended. (but part of the purpose of this blog is to serve as a sort of journal of our lives and one of the things I want to capture is Pop Culture stuff and I think the Kindle is a perfect example of that. I wonder how Dean will be reading his books in 20 years while he chuckles at my excitement over my Kindle?? A microchip implanted in his cornea?).

Moving on...Remember when I told you about the Muffin Tin Meals? We're still doing that quite often and it's working out really well for Dean. Especially at dinner time.

It doesn't really always help him to eat exactly what we're eating (the meal above was actually lunch a few weekends ago), because we fill all of the "holes", so he gets a lot more variety than we usually have with our meals. But I'm just happy he's EATING. Because this kid does NOT normally like to eat. He's still super picky, but at least with the muffin tin meals we get a decent variety of foods from all the food groups at at least 1 meal per day and he usually eats almost everything in the tin, which is A LOT for Dean. It also seems like he eats pretty well at school - probably peer pressure of seeing his friends eating. So I'm feeling pretty good about the fact that now I know he's getting at least 3 days/week of really good lunches and snacks while at school, plus several days/week of good dinners when we do the muffin tin meals.

A few weeks ago it was "Culture Week" at school and all of the kids were supposed to bring a snack that was representative of their culture. Keep in mind we live in an extremely culturally diverse area and Dean has kids at his school who are African American, Filipino, Japanese, Hawaiian, Korean, and several of mixed Polynesian ancestry. I jokingly told Joel we should just send Dean with some white bread or something (referring to the fact that he might in fact be the whitest kid there). But luckily Joel's Austrian background saved the day. Joel made some Kipfrel, some kind of Austrian cookie, which I'm told were a HUGE hit with the kids. However, Dean was PRETTY upset when I wouldn't let him eat all of the cookies while he was helping Joel make them:

See, he's not always adorable!

But he WAS being pretty stinkin' cute a few weekends ago when his friend Sienna came over for a playdate for a few hours. Dean's been SUPER bummed because his good friend Rylee from across the street moved to Costa Rica for a year in early May. Dean and Rylee used to get together and play several times a week. The neighborhood has felt really quiet since they left and I think Dean's been pretty sad. So I called Sienna's Mom, Lorly, (they live on the corner of the street behind us) and asked if Sienna could come play for a few hours. They had a lot of fun! Sienna was much better at sharing toys than Dean was, but overall they did pretty good. There was a minor meltdown when they both wanted the blue bowl (and we only have 1) when they ate snack and Dean has a hard time understanding and being patient with letting his guest be served first. Fortunately, 3-yr-olds don't hold grudges long AT ALL and they were back to playing and laughing in no time! We're hoping to make it a regular date with Sienna!

And finally, just this past weekend, Dean helped a little bit with LOTS of yardwork we were finally able to get done!!

We planted 18 of these Areca Palm trees in our backyard above the retaining wall along the back fence line. We've been meaning to do this for almost a year now and it felt SO GOOD to get it done! It's amazing how much better it looks already and I can't wait for them to grow up big and tall and give us some nice tropical shade back there -hopefully keeping that side of the house cooler in the late afternoon. We had a load of black cinder dropped off yesterday and Joel's been busy removing A LOT of sand from up there and adding cinder on top of the sand where we planted them. We didn't even bother with topsoil - just planted them right into the sand. They're pretty hardy plants and should do fine. Dean seems to be unimpressed with our efforts overall. Although he has been enjoying watering all the new plants with his leftover bathwater! He thinks that's pretty cool!! I'll try to get some pictures later this week of the finished work once Joel's done spreading out all the cinder.

For now, I think that's it for all the randomness. I have a few more posts to type up to get caught up with all of the May happenings. I'll try to get that done before I head to bed tonight so I can start June off on the right foot!!